web analytics
November 28, 2014 / 6 Kislev, 5775
At a Glance
Judaism
Sponsored Post
IDC Herzliya Campus A Day on Campus

To mark IDC Herzliya’s 20th anniversary, we spent a day following Prof. Uriel Reichman, IDC’s founder and president, and Jonathan Davis, VP for External Relations, around its delightful campus.



The ‘Chance’ Encounter

Lessons-Emunah-logo

It was his first taste of success.

As a poor immigrant, Yosef owned few possessions and knew no one in America. Fortunately, though, he possessed a keen business sense and his wife had an exceptional eye for diamonds and precious jewels. She accompanied her husband to my grandfather, a wholesale jeweler, and together they purchased a few fine pieces and opened a small jewelry store.

With determination and a strong work ethic, Yosef’s business quickly took off. Within a week, he sold most of his inventory. He planned to use the profits to purchase additional pieces of jewelry and, hopefully, build a successful business.

Yosef returned home that Friday afternoon in good spirits. Noting the late hour, he stopped at a local synagogue to daven Minchah. He davened slowly and diligently and was one of the last men left in shul. On his way out, he noticed his old friend Herman in the corner of the shul. Herman looked troubled, so Yosef approached him and asked if everything was okay.

Herman slowly shook his head. “I feel like my life is falling apart. My wife has been sick for months and our home is falling apart. My children are suffering, and my wife’s situation is deteriorating. I hardly have enough money to put bread on the table, let alone the expensive medical procedure for my wife.”

“I’m sorry to hear that,” said Yosef. “What can I do for you?”

“I’m not really sure,” Herman replied. “I don’t know why I am pouring my heart out to a complete stranger; I guess I am very desperate. Yesterday the doctor told us about a procedure that may be able to save my wife’s life.” He suddenly paused.

“That’s wonderful,” said Yosef.

“Well, not quite. There is no way I’d be able to come up with thousands of dollars to pay for this procedure. A few of my friends have kindly offered to help me, but that only amounts to a few hundred dollars – a fraction of what the surgery will cost.” He shook his head as a tear rolled down his cheek. “I’m sorry for keeping you. I just had to get it off my chest. Thanks for listening. I better go home to my wife now.”

Yosef was silent as he watched the broken man walk away. Herman’s head was bowed and his shoulders were slumped.

“Wait,” Yosef called after him. “I want to help you.”

Slowly, Yosef pulled an envelope from the inside pocket of his jacket. “Here, take this money,” he said. “Use it to pay for your wife’s surgery, and may she have a speedy recovery.”

Herman was speechless, yet the look in his eyes said it all. Indeed, his gratitude knew no bounds.

On Monday morning, Yosef returned to my grandfather’s shop to purchase new merchandise.

“How’s business?” asked my grandfather.

“Thank God, it’s going well,” Yosef replied. Nonetheless, Yosef was strapped for cash. He explained what had occurred in shul on Friday afternoon.

My grandfather listened to the story carefully. Afterward he walked to his vault and returned with a wad of cash. “Here,” he said to Yosef, handing him the cash. “This is a thousand dollars. I want to participate in this great mitzvah. Give it to the man to help his wife get better.”

Together, Yosef and my grandfather sponsored almost the entire sum for the lifesaving surgery for the sickly Jewish woman.

* * *

Decades passed, and no one in my family was aware of this story. By “chance,” I met Yosef while vacationing in Israel. After stopping to ask him for directions, we began chatting. After a quick round of “Jewish geography,” Yosef’s face lit up.

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “The ‘Chance’ Encounter”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry .
NYT Ignores US Condemnation of PA Incitement, Prints Info on Ferguson Cop
Latest Judaism Stories
Parsha-Perspectives-NEW

A person who truly feels that everything is a blessing from G-d will count his blessings and realize just how much he has.

The Story of Jacob and Esau (2010) 11 x 19, bronze relief by Lynda Caspe. Courtesy Derfner Judaica Museum – Hebrew Home at Riverdale

Yaacov returns the stolen blessing of material wealth and physical might to Esav

Rapps-Rabbi-Joshua-logo

The Jew, from the perspective of the name Yaakov, is dependent on the non-Jewish world. This can be seen today in the relationship between the State of Israel and the United States

Lessons-Emunah-logo

Yet, ultimately, looking back, these “setbacks” turned out to be really for the patient’s best – for the good.

In the afternoon, he reached into his pocket to check for the money, but it was empty. “The $50 bill must have fallen out,” Alex exclaimed. “It’s got to be in one of the rooms I was just at.”

Although the conversion ceremony involves more than circumcision and immersion, these are the two essential requirements, without which the conversion is ineffective.

Question: If Abraham was commanded to circumcise his descendants on the eighth day, why do Arabs – who claim to descend from Abraham through Yishmael – wait until their children are 13 to circumcise them? I am aware that this is a matter of little consequence to our people. Nevertheless, this inconsistency is one that piques my curiosity.

M. Goldman
(Via E-mail)

Rashi in Shabbos 9b writes that the reason why the tefillah of Ma’ariv is a reshus is because it was instituted corresponding to the burning of the eimurim from the korbanos – which was performed at night.

It almost sounds as if Hashem is saying, “I have to keep Yaakov from getting too comfortable; otherwise he will forget Me. I can’t promise him sustenance because then he won’t need Me. He won’t write. He won’t call. He won’t love Me anymore.”

The Decree Of 1587
“Two Kabs Of Dinars Were Given…To King Yanai”
(Yevamos 61a)

Simply too many cases of prayers being answered to deny it makes a difference to our fate. It does.

Prayer is our language: Hakol kol Yaakov – the voice is the voice of Jacob – the voice of prayer.

Jacob cries, overcome by the knowledge that his great love for Rachel will end in unbearable pain.

There’s a perfect mirror between Jacob running away from Esav to when he reunites with his brother.

Yitzhak called you Esav and you answered him, then he called you Yaakov and you also answered him!”

More Articles from As told to Sarah Massry
Lessons-Emunah-logo

Herman was speechless, yet the look in his eyes said it all. Indeed, his gratitude knew no bounds.

Massry-010314-Beads

In the dim lights of the auditorium, the outfit screamed of loudness, and I felt different.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/judaism/jewish-columns/lessons-in-emunah/the-chance-encounter/2014/07/03/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: